DSWD’s efforts to help Batanes ongoing

As chair of the Response Cluster under the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reported that the relief mission to Batanes was successfully carried out Saturday.

The relief airlift on board a C130 left Villamor Airbase at 12:30 noon of Saturday. The relief included 600 family food packs, 20,000 ready to eat brown rice bars, bottled water, malongs, and generator sets for distribution to families affected by Typhoon Ferdie in the province.

DSWD Director Felino Castro who headed the relief team also reported that the Rapid Damaged and Needs Analysis Team and the Response Emergency Telecommunications Team from the Regional DRRMC who joined the mission were also deployed to provide emergency telecoms and health assessment as well as needs assessment.

Governor Marilou Cayco briefed the team on the situation of the province and said that canned goods, ropes for securing houses and emergency communication units are needed the most. As of today, Itbayat town remains isolated.

Congresswoman Henedina Abad also joined the mission and brought in water purification systems.

Dir. Castro recommended that a follow through relief airlift via C295 be done on Sunday morning for Itbayat.

DSWD Secretary Judy Taguiwalo was pleased that the mission was completed saying that the relief supplies will greatly help the affected families.

However, she said that the relief operations are far from over and more efforts still have to be made.

Itbayat has not been reached yet and the extent of the damage to life and property is not known. Constant and tight coordination between the LGU of Batanes, the DSWD, and all other agencies of the government in disaster relief and mitigation is necessary so immediate aid may reach those, who are most severely affected.

Source: Philippine Information Agency

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